If you are feeling generous this holiday season you might want to consider Kiva.org which facilitates micro loans. The base donation level is $25. The loan will be paid back and then you can then re-donate that return to a new loan.
Kiva gives you a summary of the loan requester, their local financial service, and a risk rating. By crowdsourcing the loan amount it gives access to people who would not traditionally be approved for loans.
I have donated to 8 loans. Only one has defaulted, and that was because it’s in Yemen, and honestly I just hope the women I donated to there are okay.
I’ve donated to all women:
* For a solar panel in Cambodia
* to build a sanitary toilet in the Philippines
* to purchase a bio-digester in Kenya
* to purchase a radio taxi dispatch system in Bolivia
* to purchase a new sewing machine in Colombia
* to expand a female owned construction company in the US
* to open a female owned dog day care in the US [still collecting funds, linked]
Anyway, you can filter by all types of criteria. I’ve been donating on and off for the last few years. Here is the VlogBrothers video I learned about it through: Sorry for sucky link formatting, I’m on my phone.